Ok so YOU GUYS.
I have serious summer eats on the brain, and it doesn’t help that I just spent Monday and Tuesday in LA for meetings. I mean, it was only 70 degrees, but man, the sunshine and warmer temps were kind of amazing. It was a busy and quick trip, so I didn’t get nearly enough time outside, but it was still nice.
Also, I think I should probably just move myself to southern California because I could really get used to their weather…and their shopping…and their FARMERS MARKETS.
But for now I’ll just dream… and go visit my brother whenever possible. I already have major plans to take Asher to the new Wizarding World of Harry Potter this summer. She’s been begging me to take her for months and I promised her that once I finished my book manuscript, we would go. Hoping for sometime in July, and hoping to make it a longer trip this time! Maybe even go to the beach, actually do a little shopping and eat at all the best brunch spots. DUH.
Okok, but my point in all this rambling is that my summer food cravings are strong. I guess it’s kind of appropriate since Memorial Day weekend is not this weekend, but then next. For me that’s always the unofficial start to summertime! 🙂
So let’s talk BBQ Chicken. Did you guys grow up on this?? My dad would make grilled BBQ chicken in the summertime, all the time. It was just so quick and easy. Plus, it was a meal he could serve with rice, which you know is a HUGE hit in my family.
This dish kind of goes back to mom’s and my comfort meal of chicken and rice. In the winter the chicken was baked, but in the summer it was grilled, and smothered in BBQ sauce. The only real difference was the sauce and maybe some grilled corn, but we loved it, and to this day it’s still one of my mom’s and my favorite flavors.
A lot of times I will text people recipes and ask them to choose their favorites. I’ll text them a list of six or so recipes to a few people, mom included, and all will come back saying the same thing. BBQ Chicken!!
Well OK then!
Here’s how this works, it’s simple and always a favorite. First, you’ll need some polenta. I like to use dry polenta and cook it with milk + a touch of butter. It makes for the creamiest polenta. Then comes the cheddar cheese and charred corn!
Yes and YES.
Really, can you ever go wrong with a little cheddar and a little corn? NOPE.
So while the polenta is cooking, just toss the chicken with your all time favorite BBQ sauce and some honey. The honey is a MUST. It adds a sweetness that pairs so well with the corn and the polenta. Plus, it helps the chicken to get a nice caramelization, and makes for a super sticky sauce…aka the way all BBQ sauces should be (in my opinion).
Then just grill. See, super simple. You can also bake the chicken in the oven if you prefer, or if you don’t have a grill…or if the weather is just plain crappy, which I know all too well.
Hang in there though guys, the nice weather will come, and when it does we’ll have plenty of recipes to make and eat outside. Yeah!!
Alright, so once your polenta is all ready to go and your chicken is grilled, you just need a few more things…
…avocado, because well, I add avocado to everything these days.
…peaches!! My grocery store had California Peaches and guys I wasn’t sure if they would be good, but they where SO good. If you have peaches in your store add a few fresh or grilled slices to this meal, YUM.
…fresh cilantro and chives. I feel like the cilantro is obvious, but you could also use fresh basil, I think that would be amazing. The chives are sort of a new thing for me. I am really into them right now. Loving their flavor atop so many dishes!
…and lastly – more cheese! Do I need to explain this? Never enough cheese!
Honey BBQ Chicken and Charred Corn Polenta.
- 2 cup polenta
- 3 cups whole milk
- 2 tablespoons butter
- 3/4 cup shredded sharp cheddar
- 2 ears sweet corn charred, grilled or even left raw, kernels removed from the cob
- kosher salt
- 1 1/2 pounds boneless skinless chicken breast or tenders
- 1 cup BBQ sauce + more for serving
- 1/4 cup honey
- 2 peaches sliced (left raw or grilled)
- 1 avocado sliced
- handful fresh cilantro
- fresh chopped chives
Bring 3 cups water and 3 cups milk to a low boil in a large size pot. Whisk in the polenta and cook 15-20 minutes until thickened. Stir in the butter and cheddar cheese until melted. Add the corn and season with salt + pepper.
Preheat the grill to medium high heat.
In a large gallon size zip-top bag or glass bowl, combine the chicken, BBQ sauce and honey and toss well to coat.
Grill the chicken, brushing with any leftover BBQ sauce for 3-4 minutes per side, gently flipping 2-3 times until chicken is cooked through and has light char marks. You can also use a grill pan or skillet. Remove and let rest 5 minutes, then slice against the grain.*
To serve, divide the polenta among bowls. Top the polenta with sliced peaches, avocado and the BBQ chicken. Garnish with cilantro and chives. EAT!
And then you’re DONE. Honey BBQ Chicken and Charred Corn Polenta in under an hour… please and thank you!